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tv   The War Room With Jennifer Granholm  Current  January 18, 2013 3:00pm-4:00pm PST

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sometimes it comes to me in the form of a nightmare and i'll wake up, you know, in the middle of the night and i just sit there and think and, you know, try to figure it all out. she was a woman who loved life who loved her fans, who loved her son, who loved her daughter, who loved being who she was. anna nicole smith had fought all her life to escape her troubled past, recreate herself, and put her name in lights. and, for a brief time, she managed to do just that.
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joe biden >> michael: i'm michael shure. tonight in "the war room," just a few days before the inauguration and an issue that pops up that wasn't big on the campaign trail, and of late has not been big in the mines of most americans. terrorism terrorism. ♪ >> michael: tonight american's want to know what is happening to their fellow countrymen in algeria. the state department confirmed that americans are still being held hostage in the north
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african nation. we do know from the associated press that at least one american, from texas, is dead. it is also unclear how he died at the hands of the militants or during the much-criticized raid on the facility. a second raid is underway to free the remaining hostages. 12 hostages have died since wednesday, about 650 are now free. for the latest we turn to abc news. >> reporter: u.s. officialings say the algearian hostage situation is extremely fluid, and americans are still being held. >> this is an act of terror. >> reporter: today algearian television broadcast interviews with some of the hostages a 2
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plane adriveed to deliver hostages. an estimated 20 gunmen attacked a bus. >> it appears to have been a large, well coordinated and heavily armed assault. >> reporter: overnight algearian troops launched a rescue mission. it was apparently a blood, and not entirely successful event. while the algearian government said the raid was over u.s. officials insist it is ongoing. at least five americans managed to escape. as for the others -- >> in interest of their security, i am not going to provide any further details.
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>> michael: this is all happening less than 48 hours before president obama is sworn in for his second time. an issue that has been largely quiet for the last four years. joining us now for a joining us now for a perspective on the situation is he's the author of "leading from behind: the reluctant president and the advisors who decide for him". he comes to us from washington. richard, welcome inside "the war room." >> thank you. >> michael: i want to -- i want to ask you about the hostage situation. it's focused american attention on an issue that -- you know, that frankly hasn't had its focus for a while. what can you tell us about, you know, what is happening there, and how it affects america? >> well one of the things that this shows is that ignorance is dangerous.
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the united states ignored afghanistan in the 1990s and we saw what came out of that. we have been ignoring this area of africa for a long time even though morocco has been saying for many years that radical islamic groups have been growing for a while. perhaps the most prominent of them this one. he is someone who emerges in 2002, and takes 18 germans and french backpackers hostage. he gets almost $20 million as a result. he builds up a massive force from that. and through hostage taking robberies and associations with drug runners, they help guide many of the drugs ultimately boun for europe, they are getting paid fees to do that, so
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this group has grown through money and through violence, and they are very good at it. >> richard, aren't you overstating it though by saying we have ignored that part of the world? just yesterday for the first time in a while recognized the government of somlia. >> egypt is as far away from molly -- responsible military action is based this the heart of europe. there hasn't been much government scrutiny of the region and the american allies
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feel neglected. many countries have been under constant assault. even the french frankly are frustrated with the lack of u.s. interest in the region. >> michael: let's listen to hillary clinton the secretary of state today. she had this to say about the hostage crisis. >> it is absolutely essential that we broaden and deepen our counter terrorism cooperation going forward algeria and all countries of the region. >> michael: what do you say -- you know, what do you think of the posture of hillary clinton now in reaction to what happened in aljeeria and what is going on in north moli in terms of how the american state department is reacting. i heard you say we have not been proactive here, but what do you think of the reaction? >> the reaction has been slow in coming. there are a number of americans
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still held hostage in that same gas facility. so they have to be very cautious what they do say. and i'm certainly not going to fault the secretary of state for being cautious. that said the counter terrorism cooperation has been slow in coming. the french have not been getting the kind of satellite photographs, drones and other technical assistance they would expect from their nato ally. the need to say the european nations can't pay ransom money to terrorist groups because that simply fuels them to buy arms and soldiers. >> michael: but is nato looking to the united states richard to be the nation that says okay you guys listen up what happened with germany and france
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they paid these ransoms and got these 18 people out, and now they have funded these groups? why is it incumbent upon the united states then to be -- you know -- [ overlapping speakers ] >> the united states pays more than two-thirds of the nato budget so we have a lion's share of influence. the money paid to save the germans and french backpackers, that trend has continued. now we have encouraged -- our allies have encouraged this industry by rewarding it with money, and instead of reacting -- using other means. >> michael: of course it is going to continue if it has worked. i want to ask you as someone who has a degree of expertise in
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this, where do you see this going now? and what would america's role be? on the ground, with drones? what is your take on that. >> i don't think there's any reason to put american boots on the ground in algeria or anywhere else. but generally what the united states has that is superior to france or any of our nato allies is technical intelligence capabilities. satellites and drones and such. and any of our allies who are active in the fight against terrorism there. algeria has been a safe haven for a number of radical it listen-only modic groups. and they are sort of using it as an extension of their foreign
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policy. they have generally been fuelling and funding this for many decades. the algearians need to be confronted. if you are going to be taken seriously, you cannot support terrorist groups either inside or outside their borders. >> michael: and the about that they operated almost unilaterally in trying to free the hostages speaks to that they need to be confronted on that. the book is "leading from behind." richard miniter thanks for being here in "the war room." coming up it's the one time americans get to say to the british, see we can do pomp and circumstance just as well as you can. and republican leaders are on a secret retreat. we'll let you in on that secret. and later, the man, the myth, the legend that's right joe biden's exploits are pit to
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paper. it's a friday night in "the war room," and we're just getting started, so stick around. [ voice of dennis ] driving bonus check? every six months without an accident, allstate sends a check. ok. [ voice of dennis ] silence. are you in good hands?
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if you have symptoms of a heart attack. use caution when driving or operating machinery. common side effects include nausea trouble sleeping and unusual dreams. with chantix and with the support system it worked. it worked for me. [ male announcer ] ask your doctor if chantix is right for you. alright, in 15 minutes we're going to do the young turks. i think the number one thing that viewers like about the young turks is that we're honest. they know that i'm not bs'ing them with some hidden agenda, actually supporting one party or the other. when the democrats are wrong, they know that i'm going to be the first one to call them out. they can question whether i'm right, but i think that the audience gets that this guy, to the best of his ability, is trying to look out for us.
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and so my fellow americans ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country. >> government is not the solution to our problem. government is the problem. >> government is not the problem. and government is not the solution. we the american people we are the solution. >> michael: ah the sweet sounds of inauguration. starting a second term is far from a fresh start. president obama is picking up where he left off at the top of his second-term agenda are straightening the finances and pushing gun legislation.
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and he will have his legacy in mind as he protects healthcare reform and the economic recover that he started. buckle up it is going to be a ride. joining us now for the beginning of that ride is presidential historian allan lichtmann. he joins us from washington, d.c. i want to welcome you back inside "the war room." you know, i can't help but think, and i'm sure it is a question you are asked to answer constantly. second terms not generally friendly to people coming out of a first term. look at what hatched to not just ronald reagan, president clinton had to deal with impeachment. what is it about the second term? >> second terms have been tough. even for franklin roosevelt. he started off his second term with his first political loss.
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here is why second terms are tough. number 1 many presidents often put out their best ideas in their first term. they don't even know necessarily if they are going to get a second crack. secondly, washington can be brutal. you are a little bit battered after a first term. and finally you have been in the washington bubble much too long and you do and everyone is calling you mr. president, and you have all of these handlers, and pollsters and hucksters who always bring you down to the lowest common denominator. my first advice to barack obama, take all of those pollsters and hucksters and second them to a island far, far away for the
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next four years. >> michael: listening to what you just said and coming off of that, president obama a lot of people think he has been in his own bubble. does that make him unusual? >> it does make him a little bit unusual. and i think maybe there's a chance here. look, if you want to be a great president, you have to overcome great challenges. and not only does obama have all of the usual challenges of a second term, but he has a very conservative republican house to deal with. but he admitted during his campaign that maybe during his first term he didn't use the bully pulpit of the presidency enough. he didn't take control over the debates, for example on the big issues, but now he seems to be doing that. look, if he wants to get anything done he has to real like this.
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congress is like wall street. it profits on fear and greed. how do you get theses fearful of you? you bring the american people along. great change occurs during a crisis, like the great depression, or when you have a lot of grassroots power. there is a great sign that he has taken his campaign organization and converting it into a second-term grassroots organization. but if there is any one big issue that he hasn't talked about much, which outweighs, immigration, gun control, that he has to take the lead on is the environment and catastrophic climate change. if we don't deal with that issue, who knows what the fate of the earth is going to be. who cares whether the rich pay 36% or 39%.
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that's not going to change the course of the country unless you have comprehensive tax reform that dealt with the fact that we are becoming a nation of inequals. like on the eve of the great depression. >> certainly i would agree with that. i would also disagree with part of it, because it has been shown that enough people do care about that wealth and equality because he did win as a not terribly popular president in a reelection. but one of the other things is the who issue of guns. i don't remember and i don't have the breadth of knowledge that you do but i don't seem to remember a -- an issue like what he is having to do now or has chosen to do now with guns being sort of gifted to him -- or to a president at the beginning of a second term. that gives him a bit of momentum that i don't remember -- momentum going into
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the second term that few presidents have had. >> i think that is exactly right. very few presidents have had good momentum going into the second term. we saw it even with franklin roosevelt and other presidents as we know have stumbled through the first couple of years of their second term. so you are absolutely right. this is an issue that was handed to him with silk gift wrapping. and he does seem to be running with it extremely -- he gave a great speech on guns. even if all of his proposals were enacted on gun control, it is necessarily going to solve the problem of gun violence in america. it would be great for him to start off his second term with a big victory, and show the power of public opinion and public support, because the polls have dramatically shifted, 15 points on strict gun control, so imagine coming in with that
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momentum and then you can begin to tackle some of the larger issues. >> it seems like that is what i think sets this circumstance a part a little bit. also i want to ask you a little bit about the relationship between a president and his legacy as it pertains to a vice president. ronald reagan really wanted george bush to win because of extending the reagan era, which i think he found to be something that was very important to him. similarly i think bill clinton wanted al gore to win. barack obama doesn't have that. the two front runners or maybe three, but two within his administration, whether bide own runs probably hinges on whether hilary runs. that doesn't seem to be an extension of what he does today. is that right? >> i think that's wrong. i have my own take on it. i have my own system to
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predicting elections. it's called the dees the white house. and it's how well think party holding the white house has governed, whether or not the sitting president is running again. so if barack obama wants to extend -- which is very difficult, have three democratic presidents in a row, it is all going to depend on his success in governing and leading the country. if he is success, and comes out as a very popular president who has achieved something, then there's an excellent chance that the democrats are capture another term in the white house. if he doesn't. if he leaves as a failed president like george w. bush, then we'll get a change in party power in 2016 and this is true regardless of the identity of the democratic nominee. i think barack obama would very much like to be one of those rare presidents who passes on his success to another candidate
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of his own party. that doesn't happen very often. it happened with reagan and bush, and before that you have to go back to roosevelt and truman. >> michael: yeah, i agree with you, i just sort of see his relationship with biden as hilary as compelling political theater. what does it matter what happens on monday? who is paying at attention? who really cares? and it is too much? >> i don't think it is too much. everyone is paying at attention. this is our one great national. we have this symbol of this peaceful transfer of power, and the celebration of our democracy when all americans can come together at least for one day, put aside all of the partisan ranker and divisions and celebrate more than 200 years now of table democracy in
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america. >> i don't know if it is one day or just a couple of hours. but i really appreciate the incite, allan lichtmann, thank you so much. up next we have talked a lot about the gun lobby this week, but what about gun manufacturers themselves? it is a story you will only fine here in "the war room." ♪ at 10 eastern only on current tv. at cepacol we've heard people are going to extremes to relieve their sore throats. oh, okay, you don't need to do that. but i don't want any more of the usual lozenges and i want new cooling relief! ugh. how do you feel? now i'm cold. hmm. this is a better choice. new cepacol sensations cools instantly, and has an active ingredient that stays with you long after the lozenge is gone. ahhh.
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♪ >> michael: well the tragedy in nowtown, connecticut has profoundly moved the dial on public support for stricter gun laws. the new poll finds that 54% of americans think gun control laws should be tightened in
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comparison to just 39% lass than a year ago. perhaps most heartening is the proposal by gun owners. a whopping 93% of people from gun-owning households support background checks on all gun purchases. and 53% of them support a ban on high-capacity magazines. but will public opinion translate into meaningful policy changes? as we have seen in the weeks since nowtown, not without a fiekt from the nra and the gun lobby. our next guest lee fong, contributing writer for "the nation," and he is here with the latest on what gun manufacturers are doing. welcome back inside "the war room." >> thanks for having me. >> when i see these numbers on guns, it's astonishing how much
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this tragedy has changed these numbers. >> this tragedy was unique, one because it was so horrific, but two, we saw a lot of political leadership that we haven't seen in previous massacres. with the shooting in wisconsin we didn't see the president campaigning and top democrats calling for reform. that has changed this time. >> michael: something that has changed is the way that the nra is being side stepped now by the gun manufacturers themselves. tell us a little bit about how that is happening and how different that is? >> typically the big gun manufacturers have stayed in the sidelines largely. instead they funnel money and coordinate with idealogical groups. usually the nra to push a very hard line and push their public policy preferences. this time we're seeing some gun manufacturers come out and directly challenge the
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president's proposal. in particular, schrum lugar andco, is appealing to a rise up to oppose that. >> michael: when i hear that. i don't have a problem with that. that's basic grassroots lobbying. but what i find interesting and different about it is the way that the nra is pushed to the side in this and is that because of their power now? do they see a waning influence at the nra or the gun owners are panicked. >> the gun economics in this debate are kind of unique. guns -- if you have a rifle that is well maintained it lasts a lifetime, so the gun industry is kind of in a quagmire.
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the way they make more money is by stirring up fear. they get people to go out into the stores and buy more guns and ammunition. now with this large political debate happening, gun companies have given more opportunity to make more money. >> michael: the opportunity to make more money comes from the panic or -- where does that opportunity to make more money. i hear what you are saying. you have a rifle forever. they need to do something to update or change. i thought my iphone charger would last me forever, until the iphone five came out and i needed a new charger. so i don't knee what they are trying to do. >> the nra and the gun companies are working in concert, although they are playing different roles here. the fear of gun control spurs sales. and we have seen that over the
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last four years. all of these crazy conspiracy theories have boosted profit. and gun companies have said actual gun-control legislation iffen acted could hurt their profits. and after the assault weapons ban was passed in the mid-'90s, their sales dropped. >> michael: it's such an interesting thing, and one of the things that made me wonder about was sort of the effect of the nra again. why now go away from the nra? if they say -- if all of these things you are saying are true they had this built-in monopoly on lobbying from the nra that they seem to be going ash right now, and it makes me wonder if that shows that this nra report card that congress people are so worried about all the time is losing its importance.
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>> i will say the commercial targeting the president and his children might have jumped the shark. so we might see that as are motivation of why gun companies are now side stepping them and going directly to the customers. >> michael: yeah, i want to ask you about -- what you said about the gun company one more time about how they pledged a dollar for every sale to the nra. what is that? is that making nice for going around them? >> this just started on the last couple of years. for the last 20 years, gun companies have provided millions to the nra, but in the last presidential campaign, big gun companies pledged that for every gun sold a dollar would be tributed to the nra's special fund that would be used in politics to one attack ads and such. and the more kind of fear and
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politicization that we see around gun issues the more profit that the gun companies see and the money that is going back to the efforts. >> michael: they are a little bit like the mafia. >> that's right. >> michael: lee fong thank for coming. >> thanks for having me. >> michael: at least 1,016 americans have died since the sandy hook elementary shooting. that's a rough estimate that we're giving you from "slate magazine." this is a memorial for ken harbin in oakland, california. ken was shot friday night a few blocks from his home. jennifer mentioned his death on yesterday's show here about urban violence. his teacher sent us this photo. he says he was gentle well mannered and on his track to graduate. it's a good reminder that gun
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violence affects us from coast-to-coast, and senseless gun violence continues to happen in america every day. circumstance & the inside analysis. the presidential inauguration this monday morning at 10 eastern only on current tv.
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♪ >> michael: on inauguration day in 2009, 15 congressional republicans gathered in the caucus room in washington, d.c. to plot a campaign of destruction for president obama. wow, has that backfired. their entrance against has and warded them a lower approval rating than cockroaches.
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but they are starting to end the madness. eric cantor explained. looks like they have learned to compromise, but how long will have last? joining me now to discuss the republican party makeover is current tv correspondent david shuster, he is coming to us from washington, d.c. welcome back inside "the war room." >> michael great to be with you as always. >> david, never before has a retreat been so apply named. it seems the republicans have just run away. they have said all right this guy -- maybe this time he means that he is not going to negotiate on this debt ceiling. do you sense that's what is coming out of this? or is there a darker path that they are trying to follow?
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>> well, what has me so intrigued are the at attentions between the house republicans and the republicans in the senate. if you look at the sequestration and automatic budget cuts, it looks like the house wants to try to blame the senate if things fall apart. so they can say now the burden is on the senate which they have to agree to an overall budget deal by april. and then they can say at that point we'll deal with the debt ceiling. so it was a way to put some pressure on mitch mcconnell. but mitch mcconnell seems to think that okay we'll pass a budget in the senate and then use that as possible leverage with the republicans in the house who might hold up the debt ceiling. >> michael: that makes perfect sense that that is what they are trying to do it is really just passing the buck. the white house held a firm line on saying we're not going to
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negotiate at all on this debt ceiling, and it worked. do you think this is a lesson that may carry for four years, when they see themselves posturing this way rather than what they have done on other issues? do you think this might be contagious within the white house? >> remember bill clinton and what the definition of is, is. with barack obama it's sort of what the definition of negotiation is. they will deal with the debt ceiling, and that's when you will have very active negotiations over the budget. what the house has effectively done is put this on a similar path, a similar timetable as these other negotiations and the president may be able to say look, the debt ceiling is going to have to be raised regardless but house members can say well that's fine, but this is what we're demanding in terms of
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cuts. so maybe they are not linked except for the calendar, but at least in the minds of the republicans they certainly are linked. >> michael: yeah, i couldn't agree with that more. and that's a really great take on it. one of the other things that came out of this was that eric cantor said there was one part of the debt limit increase is is this . . . that's great messages and we'll get to that in a second but the 2 #th amendment says you can't alter pay until the new congress comes in. so it might not be legal. >> yeah it's pretty amazing because the republicans in the house can say whatever they want. the fact of the matter is they lost this argument the president said look this is all about paying the bills that we have already run up. it is about the future spending
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that was already approved. the republicans were losing that argument, and now they have lost it by saying okay fine. and then three months from now if we don't have bought, we can close down washington and figure out what to do with washington. but certain services like laum's pay would go forward, and it's now lawmakers play that hasn't suffered. >> michael: word play is an important part of this. and the legacy of todd akin and richard mourdock is shrouding this issue. it was said we need to communicate better and we have to be sensitive and understand. this is really remedial stuff. but it is basically just don't
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say rape when you talk about it. will that be the republican mantra? >> there have been a number of republicans on capital hill who says look we need our version of jay carney. every sunday talk show in washington knows that no matter what the republican majority is saying at any given time. you look lindsay graham on one of the sunday talk shows and he is going to tear it apart. so there's no discipline or management on the republican side and that has been endlessly frustrating to the republican party because there are feelings all over the map. there's no coherent rational message and even some republicans as crazy as they are, they seem to recognize the damage that is inflicting to their brand. >> michael: the message was never rash shall, but it was
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always coherent. so that's a huge change when you say that. if you want to be smarter, watch david shuster. you can also hear him on we act radio. thanks, david. up next year in "the war room," the glitz, the glamour, the gowns, the gossip we're of course talking about the innewing ration, not one of david shuster's dinner parties. we'll have much more right after this. a analysis. the presidential inauguration this monday morning at 10 eastern only on current tv.
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♪ >> michael: welcome back inside "the war room." i'm michael shure. president obama's inauguration on monday is making our nation's capitol the most happening place to be this weekend, and to get an insider's take joining us is
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keli goff, political correspondent for "the root." keli comes to us from new york. welcome back inside "the war room." >> great to be back. >> michael: tell us how this is president obama's fourth inauguration? >> his fourth inauguration? >> michael: yeah, we mentioned it earlier, but the idea that the president -- it will be on monday, the fourth time he is actually sworn in. did you know that? >> oh, of course yes. because of the mishap last time. >> michael: right. >> we're hoping for no more mishaps this time around. i think everyone has had enough practice to get it right this time. >> michael: right. and they are going to do the other inauguration on sunday because it's the 20th. >> because when it happens to actually fall. so yes. and the only reason i'm only slightly distracted that while we're excited about the swearing in, a lot of us are already thinking ahead about the
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parties. >> michael: that's right. but last time there was like ten or 12 balls -- >> there were ten official balls, not to mention all of the other countless parties scattered across. and there are a lot fewer this time. i know that people are finding out that some of the major outlets that hosted events last time aren't doing that this time. >> michael: and it marks the second-straight barack obama inauguration that i have not been invited to any of the balls. [ laughter ] >> sorry. >> michael: my streak continues. >> i didn't mean to hit a sore spot. >> michael: i had gotten over it and you just reopened the wound. >> sorry. >> michael: when we talk about the expenditures, how do people feel about that? what is the feeling in washington? that this is just too much over
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the top, or does anybody feel pretty good about this? >> they have had trouble raising the money for it this time around right? some of the big donors didn't do that this time around. so we are hearing a lot of things that we heard throughout the campaign that there was a bit of an enthusiasm gap. but this time around there is more of an attitude of people are excited that he won. we saw people standing in lines for hours. i was on this very program talking to a woman who voted while in labor with her child. but they really want to see the work and the results this term. because there were a lot of progressives that we felt last time he was so worried about getting reelected that a lot of things simply weren't done. >> michael: there is either the hey great let's get down to work
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attitude, or there is the hey, did you see the first lady's new bangs attitude? >> yes. >> michael: it's the main story here. what do you think? how it is looking? >> she got some birthday bang for her birthday. i had bang envy because even on this very show i debuted my own bangs a couple of weeks ago, and her length was so perfect, how can the rest of us even complete. so i'm not even wearing bangs tonight on air. >> michael: do you think her hat will make up for the fact that arreit are franklin won't be there this time. >> congress woman wilson was one of my favorite congress women to interview.
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and when beyonce was singing the star spangled banner i had to say no one can compete with arethra franklin and her hat. >> michael: well, have fun at all of the balls -- >> i'll try to speak you in to some. >> michael: i would love that. now here a ana kasparian, what do you have coming up on the program? >> i kicked cenk uygur to the show, and took over the show. and i'll show you what i have to offer. we're going to talk about 40th anniversary of roe v. wade. and when you think of urban outfitters, we have some real facts for you on that including whole food. and ptsd in the military a real
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problem we continue to ignore. >> michael: you should know that i never think of urban outfitters, but if i were to think about them i think everyone in the entire world is excited that you are hosting "the young turks" today. all right. we're going to take a quick break and then take a look at two very different portraits of our executive branch. you are watching "the war room" only here on current tv. question whether i'm right, but i think that the audience gets that this guy, to the best of his ability, is trying to look out for us.
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>> you know, i've always found the relationship between
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president obama and vice president joe biden compelling, not only because it truly appears to be a partnership which is not always the case between a president and his vp, but because they make it work despite being very different people. it's fitting that both men were paid homage today although in very different ways. fist the president, who needs to update his presidential portrait and the white house did just that. it's a portrait taken by pete sousa who looks like a man who just won an election, secured a second term and never has to campaign again. and great britain may benefit from photography versus paint. just saying. and joe biden the onion. for those who don't follow the site the onion takes that joe bide someone something of a washington rebel and
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